JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) – A woman claims she went through a “terrifying” situation where her child was taken from her room. She says she found her baby in another patient’s room in the same hospital.
Lory Beth Snyder stated in a social media post Friday that her family, including her infant child, were admitted into NEA Baptist Hospital in Jonesboro.
During the course of her child’s treatment at the hospital, the mother said she took some time to rest and woke up to find her child missing.
“I don’t want anyone else to go through what I did,” Snyder said through tears.
Snyder said in the post she found her child in another woman’s hospital room, in the woman’s arms “with a room full of six or seven nurses just laughing and playing with her” and her child.
The mother said she did not know the other woman and that she was not a nurse or a doctor, just another hospital patient.
She took the child out of the woman’s arms, despite the woman telling her she needed to “just go rest.”
“I told her no that I was fine and I would be taking my daughter back now,” Snyder said in the post.
Items from Snyder’s diaper bag were emptied about the room and the IV pole as well as the crib her child was sleeping in were also in the woman’s room, the mother said.
Nurses gathered up her belongings as Snyder made her way back to her own room.
Snyder said three nurses following her to her room tried to assure her the “child was in no danger,” that they knew the patient, and she meant no harm.
The other patient, Snyder claims, followed them back to her room and persisted she give the child to her and that Snyder should rest.
The nurses removed the woman from the room, according to Snyder.
The CEO of the hospital Brad Parsons said the mother and child were eventually moved to a secure room in the intensive care unit.
He said they were moved for their peace of mind.
Snyder still has many questions as the hospital investigates the incident.
“You do not enter a room and take a child that does not belong to you, especially from a person you don’t know,” Snyder said. “I want some answers, and I don’t feel like I’m getting them from that hospital.”
Parsons said he could not confirm nor deny the report that another patient entered the room and took the child because of the ongoing investigation.
“We are working with our risk management department as well as the Jonesboro police on that investigation,” Parsons said.
Snyder said she now feels like the hospital did not live up to their part in protecting her daughter.
“That hospital’s responsibility is to care for their patients and make sure that they are safe and they are well, and that doesn’t seem to be what’s going on,” Snyder said.
“Inpatient safety is our utmost responsibility, so we continue to be in communication with the mother,” Parsons said.
Following the incident, Snyder contacted the Jonesboro Police Department. She claims JPD told her no crime was committed since the other patient did not intend to harm the child.
The initial incident report from JPD states an officer spoke with Snyder and the woman who reportedly took her four-month-old child.
Snyder reported the incident she posted about to the officer.
Hospital staff allowed the officer to speak with the other patient who told the officer “she was not harming the child just taking care of it while the mother of the child slept,” according to the report.
She also said she provided the infant with a blanket and gave the child back when the nurses asked.
The child was not harmed, the officer stated in the report.
According to the same report, Snyder was told there were “no criminal charges and everything else that occurred would be a civil issue” between her and the hospital.
JPD tells Region 8 News a detective is assigned to do a follow-up investigation.
NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital confirmed by phone to Region 8 News that an incident took place, but would not give any other details.
Hospital Spokesperson Danial Reed said the staff followed protocol and handled the situation quickly.
Reed could, “neither confirm nor deny,” the report that nurses were in the suspect room with the woman’s child.
Parsons said because staff acted appropriately, no one will be reprimanded.
He said once the investigation is finalized, the hospital will review potential policy changes.
A written statement was issued from NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital:
An incident occurred in one of our patient care units (not labor and delivery) on Friday involving two patients, one of them a pediatric patient. While we cannot go into details because of patient privacy laws, two of our nurses acted immediately, followed all protocols, and rapidly brought the situation under control. Because of their quick work, all patients remained safe. Our nurses quickly secured the pediatric patient and mother and fully cooperated with police, who declined to take action against anyone. We are grateful that everyone is safe, and we wish everyone the best and continued good health.